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Intuit Partner Platform Lets SaaS Developers Reach Millions of Small Businesses

New Application Federation Gives Developers Unique Flexibility to Build and Connect Web Apps to Intuit's Platform

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif – Jun. 04, 2009 – Software developers can now easily make their Web applications available to millions of Intuit Inc.'s (Nasdaq: INTU) small business customers through Federated Applications, a new capability of the Intuit Partner Platform. Unlike other Platforms-as-a-Service, developers have the flexibility and control to write their applications using any programming language and connect them to the Intuit Partner Platform without being locked-in to a single platform.

Small businesses increasingly use Software-as-a-Service, or SaaS, for their application needs, but often face multiple challenges, including the time-consuming tasks of maintaining multiple log-ons and entering the same data several times. There is a better way: Web-based applications that are connected and work together.

Federated applications are delivered to small businesses through the Intuit Workplace an online portal where users can find, try, buy and use various Web applications. By purchasing SaaS offerings in the Workplace, small businesses can trust that those applications, and even QuickBooks® on their desktops, will work seamlessly together. Users can access all their Workplace applications using just one username and password and easily navigate between them in their browser.

"Small businesses simply want the best products available that solve their problems, save them time and money and help them grow their business - and they want those products to work together," said Alex Chriss, business leader for the Intuit Partner Platform. "By opening our platform to all developers and technologies, we're helping solve small businesses' most critical needs under one unified and seamlessly connected ecosystem."

Developers are eager about the opportunity.

"Twenty five years ago we bought accounts-receivable software from one vendor and accounts-payable from another. Today, if someone did that they would probably get fired. Yet, that's exactly how we buy SaaS today: CRM from one vendor, Web conferencing from a second and accounting from a third," said DD Ganguly, co-founder and CEO of Dimdim, a Web conferencing company. "That's all going to change with integrated SaaS. This Intuit platform is a significant move in that direction and Dimdim is excited to be a part of the process."

How Federating an Application Works

With Federated Applications, Web applications built with any programming language, database or cloud computing resource can be easily published to the Intuit Workplace and marketed to the nearly 25 million employees in small businesses that use QuickBooks. Developers with existing applications need to only configure their application to connect with Intuit's PaaS, rather than having to re-write them. There are four integration points:

  • Data: Federated Applications that want to integrate with Intuit Partner Platform data must program against APIs provided by Intuit to enable data synchronization.
  • Login: A Federated Identity Web API allows users to use their Intuit Workplace login credentials to access the Federated Applications within Intuit Workplace.
  • User management and permissions: Intuit provides developers with a Web API so that their application can handle processes such as inviting additional users to their application.
  • Navigation: Developers with existing SaaS applications may have to make minor User Interface adjustments, such as removing sign-in/sign-out links within their solutions. The Intuit Workplace provides this in its toolbar to provide users a seamless experience between applications.

Developers need to simply define their pricing plan when packaging their application for the Intuit Workplace. Applications must pass a security assessment and privacy policy review before each application is published, to ensure the application meets the security requirements for hosting on the Intuit Partner Platform.

"The Intuit Partner Platform enabled us to easily enhance our current offering with seamless QuickBooks integration for the thousands of our small business customers who already use it to manage their finances and customer data," said Janine Popick, CEO of VerticalResponse, Inc. "Intuit's passion for helping small businesses succeed is closely aligned with ours and being part of their ecosystem provides us the opportunity to bring the benefits of professional e-mail marketing to even more small businesses."

First Apps to Federate with Intuit

Established SaaS providers and startups alike are already deploying their apps on Intuit Partner Platform. The first Federated Applications on the platform, now available, include:

  • VerticalResponse is a leading provider of on-demand e-mail marketing, online survey and direct mail solutions. VerticalResponse for Intuit Workplace adds sales and marketing tools to the accounting functionality of QuickBooks, allowing users to turn the historic data they have from past transactions and other performance into growth and increased revenue. Pricing for VerticalResponse for Intuit Workplace starts at $10 per month or on a pay-as-you-go model.
  • Dimdim, the world's easiest Web conference, enables small businesses to conduct live meetings, demos and webinars using just a PC, Mac or Linux Web browser from the comfort of their home or office. Small businesses can save money, time and travel expenses by instantly sharing their documents, Web pages, whiteboards, audio, video - even recording their meetings - with no software to install. Anyone can host unlimited Dimdim meetings with up to 50 people for only $25 per month.
  • Rypple helps employees consistently achieve better results. Teams can use Rypple to learn and execute faster by getting honest and actionable feedback from colleagues, clients and advisers. Rypple is free for up to 20 users.
  • Setster gives service providers and teams of professionals the ability to accept appointments online using an application widget that can be embedded on any Web site. Service providers can manage their own online calendars and appointment books in a very simple and intuitive user interface, while allowing clients access to their availability. Pricing for Setster starts at $9.95 per month for one user.
  • ExpenseWare automates travel and entertainment expense reporting for small businesses, helping improve speed and accuracy, greater insight into spend management and increasing employee satisfaction. ExpenseWare can import credit card data, manage out-of-pocket expenses, integrate data with QuickBooks and other accounting systems and generate custom invoices and reports. Pricing for ExpenseWare is $9.99 per user per month for up to 1,000 users.

Free trials of each application are available.

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About Intuit Inc.

Intuit Inc. (Nasdaq: INTU) is a leading provider of business and financial management solutions for small and mid-sized businesses; financial institutions, including banks and credit unions; consumers and accounting professionals. Our flagship products and services, including QuickBooks®, Quicken® and TurboTax® , simplify small business management and payroll processing, personal finance, and tax preparation and filing. ProSeries® and Lacerte® are Intuit's leading tax preparation offerings for professional accountants. Our financial institutions division, anchored by Digital Insight, provides on-demand banking services to help banks and credit unions serve businesses and consumers with innovative solutions.

Founded in 1983, Intuit had annual revenue of $3.1 billion in its fiscal year 2008. We have approximately 8,000 employees with major offices in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, India and other locations. More information can be found at www.intuit.com
 

Intuit, the Intuit logo, QuickBooks and the Intuit Partner Platform, among others, are registered trademarks and/or registered service marks of Intuit Inc. in the United States and other countries.

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